Vlasta Dusil (3)

Vlasta Dusil, Vice President, Human Resources, SAP India shares with us her ideas of the dynamic and evolving jobs across the world. She heads the HR function for SAP in India across all entities including R& D, Sales and Services organizations of SAP and is a member of the India Leadership Team. She is responsible for driving organizational design, change management, leadership and talent development.

Originally from Canada, Vlasta has worked across the globe and enjoys being a part of business discussions aimed at making organizations more effective. Being a ‘part of the table’, she is an active contributor to strategic decision making and is an enthusiastic bicyclist.

Vlasta uses a reference from an article authored at Duke University which states that 65% of children, starting school last year were going to assume careers that didn’t even exist yet. This shows us a trailer of what the future reflects in terms of the stupendous changes in the professional world. Many of us are currently in careers and roles that will likely not exist in the future due to the immense influence of technology.

Technology being a driver of this change, shows us how well connected people are and that they have access to so much information. The implications that she observes for employees are about how they look at the data, analyze it and make good decisions based on it.

Another aspect to change is the evolving mindset of consumers across industries such as Financial and Energy. Concerns like privacy, carbon footprint and interaction with the environment have encouraged organizations to be more responsive to their customers. Thus, having a workforce that can understand what customers are looking for, making that into a value proposition and translating that quickly into a solution is another trend that is really important that people need to pay attention to and at the end of the day the bottom line for all of us is to have a mindset of continuous learning or a mindset around continually evolving our careers because the jobs people have today may not be the jobs they are in 15 years from now. With the influence of a startup ecosystem and the ‘Make in India’ campaign, there is a growing demand from the manufacturing side as well.

Going down the line, Vlasta sees the following trends in the industry in the next two decades:

  • Increased adoption of predictive analysis by organizations and resulting demand for people who can manipulate and manage data well
  • Manufacturing industry, which is traditionally manual skill-based, increasingly hiring professionals with knowledge of computerized technology to make the manufacturing process more efficient

One of the key skillsets that the future workforce will require to excel at their career will be the ability to be resilient around change, especially new and different types of technologies. This will work well with the millennial generation who are digital natives and have grown up with technology.

Changes in the management curriculum and changes in leadership

With Gen Y entering the workforce, leaders are experiencing and learning how to accommodate different perspectives especially with the different expectations of Gen Y. Hence leaders should incorporate the following:

  • Be open to new leadership styles
  • Personal development through this shift in leadership styles
  • Be ready to prepare the workforce of the future especially by offering them varied experiences in different parts of the business
  • Be able to work with diverse teams on aspects like culture, gender and across generations
  • Harness this diversity in perspectives among teams and have an inclusive team environment.
  • Build collaboration in diverse teams and learn to deal with constructive conflict

Evolving role of Human Resources – The SAP perspective:

The role of HR is changing from a more traditional personal mindset to a more strategic and business focused one. Within SAP, Vlasta is driving the organization for HR with key priorities such as building leadership capability in order for leaders to become more effective around what they do, helping the organization build the right talent, developing the right programs and initiatives for faster development of talent and managing organizational change.

SAP is aimed at being structured in the most effective way by underpinning KPIs. From an HR perspective, SAP has worked more on programs, with emphasis on how these KPIs will impact the business numbers. Thus, gaining access to data on turnover rates or retention rates and using that to correlate the impact of a development plan. For example, a manager with a certain level of employee satisfaction score and other KPIs and his correlationto a higher retention rate or hiring from the best schools for long term retention.

These predictive analytics are not just measuring activities and checking the number of people who have gone through programs. However the opportunity underlying these analytics are those of taking these data points and coming up with decisions such as where to go for schooling or what we do in terms of development within a team to increase retention of talent. Thus, this requires HR to have a different kind of skillset and to develop that skillset in an analytical manner.

Vlasta is aimed at developing the talent at SAP by instilling talent development among other organizational leaders in their KPIs. She strives to strike a balance between achieving the organizational goals on one hand and building capability and focusing on developing and connecting with individuals and their teams on the other.

We wish her all the best for her vision and drive in Human Resources at SAP.